PLTW Gateway Unit Descriptions

PLTW Gateway Unit Descriptions
Design and Modeling
Students apply the design process to solve problems and understand the influence of creativity and innovation in their
lives. Using Autodesk® design software, students create a virtual image of their designs and produce a portfolio to
showcase their innovative solutions.
Automation and Robotics
Students trace the history, development, and influence of automation and robotics as they learn about mechanical
systems, energy transfer, machine automation, and computer control systems. Students use the VEX Robotics® platform
to design, build, and program real-world objects such as traffic lights, toll booths, and robotic arms.
Introduction to Computer Science 1
In this unit, students discover the principles of this fast-growing field by focusing on creativity and an iterative design
process as they create their own basic apps using MIT App Inventor.
Introduction to Computer Science 2
Students continue to explore the fundamentals of the stimulating career path of computer science. They venture into
text programming through Python and, in the final problem, develop an app to crowdsource and analyze data on a topic
of their interest.
Energy and the Environment
Students are challenged to think big and toward the future as they explore sustainable solutions to our energy needs
and investigate the impact of energy on our lives and the world. They design and model alternative energy sources and
evaluate options for reducing energy consumption.
Flight and Space
The exciting world of aerospace comes alive through Flight and Space. Students explore the science behind aeronautics
and use their knowledge to design, build, and test an airfoil. Custom-built simulation software allows students to
experience space travel.
Science of Technology
Science impacts the technology of yesterday, today, and the future. Students apply the concepts of physics, chemistry,
and nanotechnology to STEM activities and projects, including making ice cream, cleaning up an oil spill, and discovering
the properties of nano-materials.
Magic of Electrons
Through hands-on projects, students explore electricity, the behavior and parts of atoms, and sensing devices. They
learn knowledge and skills in basic circuitry design, and examine the impact of electricity on the world around them.
Green Architecture
Today’s students have grown up in an age of “green” choices. In this unit, students learn how to apply this concept to
the fields of architecture and construction by exploring dimensioning, measuring, and architectural sustainability as they
design affordable housing units using Autodesk’s® 3D architectural design software.
Medical Detectives
Students play the role of real-life medical detectives as they analyze genetic testing results to diagnose disease and study
DNA evidence found at a “crime scene.” They solve medical mysteries through hands-on projects and labs, investigate
how to measure and interpret vital signs, and learn how the systems of the human body work together to maintain health.